Le Titre

12.18.2006

Cheer

So, I had a VERY interesting trip up north. I ran over a deer (it was already dead, but I was on the highway in the left lane, and it was a BIG mutha. Freak me out much?), thought I was going to get pulled over for speeding so I drove into a random neighborhood and turned off my lights (not sketchy at all), got lost in Cadillac, MI, got lost in BumFuck, MI (south of Karlin - that's right, no one knows where that is), and all to the subtle odor of cat urine.

Somehow, though, all that stress melted away when I got the cabin. The cat stopped screaming, as she'd been for the past 4 hours, the new paint job in the cabin is lovely, and when I turned on the lights, I saw that our fantastic neighbors, Ross and Liz, had already set up the christmas tree. And put on the lights.

It's amazing what a little kindness can do to a person. I seriously almost started crying. They had already offered to pick one up for us, but I was fully anticipating an awkward "Sooo... when are you going to buy me a $50 tree?" talk. Sweetest people ever! I need to bake them cookies. After I finish this glass of Bailey's.

Anyways, my Dad flies in on Wednesday afternoon, and I have plenty to do before then. Meijering galore. For tonight, though, I think I'm just gonna kick back, drink more of this delicious, delicious Bailey's and watch some bad DVDs. Holidaly cheer, indeed.

12.13.2006

*exhale*

My dad had his surgery today, and it seems like everything went well. I really can't express how relieved I am. This whole thing... him telling us, Em and I getting tested, a decidedly dampened Thanksgiving, the pain in my parents' voices and faces, going through wills... I know we're not out of the woods yet, but it's so so good to know that this scary part is over. I get to play nurse next week when he flies back to Michigan, and I'm so grateful that I get a chance to actually help out. My family doesn't do the whole "loss of control" thing very well, and I'm no exception. Being productive and helpful, that I can do.

I got home on Friday after a very special week of Finals. Grades turned out alright, except for FUCKING FAUST. I'm going to kill that soul-selling bastard. Whatever, I'm over it. It's ironic that my two "fun" classes ended up being the most challenging... just confirms my thoughts that I should be a psychologist, and not a Egyptologist. Not that that had really been an option... heiroglyphs are tricky.

Home's been good. As expected, I've been joined at the hip with Busch, and I'm really ok with that. I'm beginning to notice a pattern in my friendships; well-liked, can party and socialize with the best of them, but when it comes down to it I only need one or two good friends to make a night. We went out on Friday night with some of her work friends, and I had a better time than I care to share here. She's still going through finals tomorrow (finishes tomorrow - hello, underage drinking!), but we've hung out almost every night, playing with our MacBook cameras and taking ridiculous emo pictures. Good fun. I'd also like to re-state my bathing hypothesis of the previous post, which says that I should shower more often. I think we may even be to theorem-territory, because more and more evidence is piling up.

Anyways, I am meeting La Boosch for dinner in about 10, and then going to Meijer for some grout. I was in the afore-mentioned shower when my mom called about my dad, and I sort of ripped off one of the towel racks on my way to grab the phone. Whoops.

12.04.2006

Monday morning, snow is falling...

I'm about 3 1/2 hours away from my first final of the year, and I'm oddly calm. It's for my Faust class, and I have no reason to believe that the final will be anything other than a 2-hour quiz. I've looked over my notes like mad, I've read... well, the first two books of the course (have YOU tried to read Thomas Mann in 2 weeks? That fucker is longwinded!), and at this point I don't think there's anything I can do besides not freak out and overfill my mind with things for my NEXT two finals. So here I type.

It's been a very full 3 weeks, which probably contributed to the lack o'posting. My Dell finally kicked the bucket, so I'm writing from a brand, shiny new MacBook :) I can't even TELL you how much I love it, and I'm so glad to have made the switch. My Dad sort of asked me to bring home the Dell carcass, but I don't think I can... I sort of, um, got really mad at it and beat it with its own power cord for a couple minutes, and it's now missing a few keys. Oops.

Thanksgiving was lovely, albeit filled with nervous tension regarding
my Dad's upcoming surgery. He and my Mom leave for the Mayo Clinic on the 11th, then leaving me alone for a good week+. Under normal circumstances, I'd obviously be excited and perpetually schnookered during this time, but you'll probably understand when I say I don't think that's how it's going to be this time. There's a good chance I'll visit Em for her "Don We Now Our Gay Apparel" tacky Holiday sweater party on the 16th, but I've also been told to be on alert in case I need to come out to Minnesota for... something. It's never been said out loud what that something could be, but just one look at Mom would pretty much tell you.

She's under so much pressure right now, I don't know how she can stand it. In the midst of the Most Ridiculous Holiday Commute Ever (Chicago up to Michigan City, back to Chicago to pick up my sister at O'Hare, back to Michigan City for breakfast, up to Northern Michigan), she just broke down in a way I haven't seen in a long time. Chicago holiday rush traffic can do that to the best of us, but this was... this was something else. A million something elses. I just wish there was something else I could do for them, besides the "being there."

Reading week was unproductive and lovely, as usual. I went to my second frat formal, Phi Psi's Holiday Formal at the Swissotel downtown. It was a ridiculous amount of fun, which was remarkable since I only knew one person going into it. Add in a couple strech Hummers, an open bar, a million digital cameras and some really awesome people, and you have the makings of a pretty sweet night. I loved positively raaaaavishing, dahling in one of Kat's dresses... though I had to remove some of the, *ahem*, padding. Sorry, hon.

Besides that, it's been a bit of a blur of ineffecient studying punctuated by the Food Network, goodbye parties with late night cigarettes, and episodes of Buffy. I've learned that I really should shower more often, because if I do say so myself, I clean up good. I found out that Schuyler Fisk, the female protag in
one of my favorite movies about college admissions,is a fantastic singer and you should go steal her music right away. I've learned that I have absolutely no head for schedules, especially those that are work-related, and I should have a filled-out calendar by me at all times, in case I have to change something and end up fixing it back 3 times. Finally, I've found that I really don't like this new "Blogger Beta" crap, because it doesn't have any of those great buttons, oh, like FONT. Or hyperlink. Eh. Boo to you, Blogger. Regardless, I should probably dress myself and get ready for this non-final. Wish me luck!

11.13.2006

Short stinky post

All is well with my ticker. So that's good. I got to wear a heart monitor for 48 hours after my appointment on Thursday, though, so THAT was fun. Wanna know something really gross? I still haven't showered.


Eeeeewwwww!!! I know! I'm so grossed out too! Don't worry, don't worry, I'm gonna shower in, like, two seconds. I'm in class right now, so we'll all have to wait a liiittle bit more.

Anyways, besides the whole "health" thing, there's not a lot to report. Lots of reading, lots of work, lots of Fat, it's all good. I'm sad to say of that silly period when I had both S&M (or at least the chance of S&M), I now have neither. I'm really not sure what happened with #2, so that kinda bums me out a bit. It's alright, I suppose - at least I know that I made a good solid effort. Don't have much to show for it, but ah well.

Anyways, class is over, and I really should run back and bathe. Because man.

11.02.2006

End of the Stress Fest

Oh, blessed relief. Today I had my last two midterms, which is remarkable, considering at this school, "midterm" frequently means "test until the last week of classes." Even more remarkable is the fact that I've actually done well this quarter. Really well, in fact. Though I am obviously behind in readings right now (I haven't counted the number of pages, but I'm sure it's well into the 1000 range), I actually have time to do them now, rather than needing to cram them into one or two nights of library hell, culminating with a midterm and immediately passing out for 7 hours afterwards.

No, my last individual deadline for the quarter is my book report that's due on Tuesday. That's right, a book report. The thought makes me want to giggle. Also, in addition to finishing my midterms yesterday, I also hooked a research credit hour for next quarter, which I'm super excited about. It looks really interesting (it's a Reading Comp Lab, and includes projects like studying suspense, false memories, and first impressions - very cool), but I'm still keeping my eye out for other opportunities, maybe some that tie in more with clinical. The best part is, I finally finished up my draft of the Summer Research paper for Dr. N, and when I talked about the project during my mini-interview with these guys, they were really interested in it. Better than that, I actually sounded competent. Imagine!

So, things are definitely settled down. That's not to say that the other things I talked about last week aren't bugging me a bit, because they have. I'm dropping the S and focusing on the M more exclusively, so we'll see how that works out. I'm optimistic, but out of my element. Every time I talk to Dad, he sounds more sad and more scared, and it's breaking my heart. Finally, I have my echocardiogram scheduled for next Thursday, and I honestly don't know what the results will be. I think they'll be fine. But I honestly don't know.

Frankly, though, all these things feel infinetly more manageable now. Maybe it's all the sleep I've been getting, but I just feel a ton more relaxed. And hey, the weekend hasn't even begun yet! I have a feeling it's gonna be a pretty good one.

10.24.2006

Things on my mind right now

- My Ancient Egypt midterm tomorrow morning at 9am. I got behind in the class because of my week o' 3 midterms, and now have been trying like mad to catch up. Unfortunately, it's a HELL of a lot of reading. To make matters worse, the midterm format is two in-class essays (class in 50 min), which I hate doing. Also, they gave us 6 potential topics, will pick two, and we don't get to use our notes. Color me unprepared.

- My dad. He went to the Mayo clinic this past weekend, and they've all but decided to do open-heart surgery. It's either that, or this other procedure called alcohol ablation, where they inject a small dose of alcohol directly into the muscle of the heart to induce a small heart attack, which will scar (and hopefully minimize) the tissue. Yikes. He sounded optimistic, and the logical part of me is too - the success rates are crazy high for either procedure, and he's doing everything right. He's with my mom (for the first time in a while), and a lot of their friends have mysteriously shown up in Minnesota for moral support. So everything's fine. But everything's really fucking scary, too.

- Speaking of fucking scary things, I have to go in to Memorial Hospital to get tested for his condition. It's genetic, and even if they don't find it now, my dad has told me to make sure that I and my sister go in "every 5 years". It's... well, it's really unsettling. I've become hyper-attentive to every little chest tic since he's told me about it, and have started to interpret past experiences in a different light as well. My crappy endurance, my major flushing after light exercise (or dancing), and oh yeah, those horrible horrible chest pains I've been dealing with since I was little. I used to think that they were associated with hunger, but in the past couple years they've had almost no correlation to that, and have gotten worse - Exhibit A, my ER trip this summer. I dunno, I'm probably being a hypochondriac, but it's really bugging me.

- My other 3 classes, besides Egypt. I've fallen behind in those now, too, in my mad dash to catch up in Egypt. I conceivably have time enough to get on top of things this weekend, but knowing me and my terrible motivation... we'll see.

- S&M. No, not that S&M, you pervs. All those who are in my Fave Five know what I'm talking about, and that's how I'm gonna keep it. It's actually a really cool development for me, and I've been enjoying it, but I'm worried that I'm gonna get in too deep and screw the whole thing up. I really, really don't want to. I wish I weren't so socially retarded.

- I spent way too much money this past weekend. All my purchases have finally shown up on my bank statement, and DAMN. I've supplemented that account with my rent money account, which makes me feel really icky. I promised myself I wouldn't do that, but it was getting too low for comfort, and my next paycheck is only for $250 or so. I'm gonna need to control myself hardcore before the Holidays, or else everyone's getting handmade scarves.

- My paper from the summer. Dr. N sent me a copy to revise/find references for a good 3 weeks ago, and I've barely touched it. I feel really bad - I'm starting to "fall off the face of the earth," as she put it, and I feel super guilty. I hate that I wasted my time this summer, when there was so much to do after the main research portion that I didn't anticipate. I just have no idea when I'm gonna finish it.

- I've been waking up from naps and dreams really abruptly, with this terrible feeling that I've missed some enormous committment. Yesterday, in the middle of a fantastic nap, I sat bolt upright shouting, "SHIT! FUCK!" in response to something that I can't even remember now. I know it was probably from a dream, something that my stressed out brain spit out randomly, but I can't shake the feeling that there's actually something huge that I'm forgetting.

*sigh* I need a vacation.

10.18.2006

Rhetorical question for a gray Wednesday

Yesterday in Psychopathology, we were studying Anxiety Disorders, primarily OCD. We discussed how everyone has irrational thoughts that we can't always control - someone may just suddenly think, "what if I kicked that dog over there?" without actually having any desire to do so. Normally, one would simply ignore or brush off that thought as random, maybe humourous. One theory is that a person with OCD cannot ignore these thoughts, and while they realize how irrational and wrong they may be, they can't shut them out. This causes a huge amount of anxiety, "I'm a horrible person, why would I think that," etc. Eventually, their panic will reach a peak, at which point the person may have engaged in some sort of tic, a compulsion. They interpret this tic to be the end of the panic, and they are conditioned to act upon this compulsion more and more often, lest the panic set in again.

So my question is this: If I can't stop thinking about cutting off this random guy's rattail, am I OCD, or just socially conscious?